Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Cover those veggies: peanut sauce

What a plateful of naked vegetables and rice needs is a thick, sweet sauce to pull them all together.

Welcome this African inspired peanut sauce, based on a recipe from the Moosewood classic, "Sundays at Moosewood Restaurant." The Moosewood Restaurant in Ithaca, NY was part of a movement that tutored a generation of hippies and vegetarians in a new American cuisine, in which we seek out inspiration from everywhere in the world for methods and spices, while still eating what grows locally.

This peanut sauce is not made from such local stuff. But I start with local onions, and substitute local tomatoes (put up last year) for the juice in the original recipe. Plus, it's a delicious way to eat local vegetables.

Another kitchen tip: Buy bananas ahead, ripen in a bag, then freeze them in Ziplocs for smoothies, or to add to this dish.

Peanut Sauce

4 cups chopped onion
1/8 cup peanut oil
1/2 tsp cayenne
1 T freshly ground ginger root
2 mashed, ripe bananas
2 cups chopped tomatoes
1 cup apricot juice
1 cup peanut butter
1/4 tsp sea salt, or to taste

Saute chopped onions until clear, then add cayenne, ginger, and banana. Stir for 5 more minutes, then add juices and stir in. Simmer ten minutes, then add peanut butter and salt.

Serve over rice and steamed vegetables. Also excellent with chicken.

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